© All images and text remain the copyright of Sandra Kay Strait.

Feel free to print, share or use my tangle patterns. Credit is not necessary, but you may not copy & claim the step outs as your own. You may not alter or use any other images in this blog without express permission from myself.

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Saturday, September 29, 2012

My Design Team Welcome Package

Yesterday I came home to a cool package!  I received my Viva Las Vegastamps! design team goodies for this term, as well as a huge order of new plates o'rubber, and a couple of other goodies I bought.

I received a pound of rubber stamps (the number of actual stamps you get always varies according to the size of the stamps.  This time around I ended up with 62)!

I also got some Miracle sheets (8.5 x 11 sheets of two-sided tape!), a roll of 1/4 inch wide Miracle tape, an oz. of Ultra High Gloss Embossing Powder, and several sizes of Kromekote paper.  May Arts Ribbon is a preferred partner for this term, so they added a sampler of some killer ribbon!


And did you see that postcard snuggled in there?  VLVS! has made up these cards using the art I did, that was used for an ad in the last edition of RubberStampMadness magazine.  I don't know if they'll be including one in every order, but it was a thrill getting one in my box!

I had also placed an order for all the pre-order plates (827,880,883,887,889,890,893) this month.

Too late for you to get them at pre-order prices, but they are still a fantastic deal at $21.95 each.  There's some Halloween, some Christmas, some Steampunk and Nautical--I'm really excited about the Nautical plate.  Add in the Harlequin Diamond background stamp I got, the Steampunk HingeTape and the smokin' Kai scissors I bought, and I am ready.  For anything!



Link to tangle pattern Confettus

The steps to Angie Shade’s tangle pattern Confettus have been posted at Tanglepatterns.com.

Link to TanglePatterns String 020

TanglePatterns String 020

Link to Day #7 of Carla Sonheim's Book Release blog Celebration • Shading Tutorial

Day #7 of Carla Sonheim's Book Release blog Celebration • Shading Tutorial

Zendala Dare #25

Zendala Dare #25

Link to tangle pattern Confettus

The steps to Angie Shade's tangle pattern Confettus have been posted at Tanglepatterns.com.

Last Day of the VLVS! Halloween Party Blog Hop!

Today's the day to vote on your favorite entry in the Viva Las Vegastamps! Halloween Party Blog Hop. Not only will the artist with the most votes win a prize, so will one of the voters, chosen at random!

Get thee hence and vote, lest the chance for a prize slip away from your grasp!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

This is an Og with a Nog Sitting on his Knee

"What are you drawing?" my husband asked.

"A Dog," I murmured, not wishing to be distracted.

"An Og?  What's an Og?" my husband chirped.

"A DOG," I snapped, really not wanting to be distracted.

"Oh, that's boring.  I want an Og.  Draw me an Og.  And a Nog, too.  I want a Og and a Nog."

I sighed, and turned to a fresh sheet of paper.  Long experience assured me that the battle was just begun.  Best to cede victory, pay tribute, and get back to what I was doing. Besides, a vision of an Og had just flashed through my brain.

So...my husband's Og and Nog.

 

Link to Simple Gifts Part 4-Blockheads Paper Arts

Simple Gifts Part 4-Blockheads Paper Arts

Link to free botanical art lesson

Drawing a Dahlia in Full Bloom

Day 5 of the Viva Las Vegastamps Halloween Party!

Day 5 of the eerily spooky, creepy and ooky Fabulously cooky VLVS! Halloween Party blog hop!

Link to Day #5 of Carla Sonheim's Book Release Blog Celebration

Tutorial in Blind Contour Drawing and Art Giveaway!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Link to Rhodia Drive Giveaway for Reporter Style Webbie Pads

“Rhodia Drive is having a giveaway! Enter Now to win 1 of 20 Reporter Style Webbie Pads!”

Link to tangle pattern Vanity


Online instructions for drawing Laurie Rosin's Zentangle® pattern: VANITY

have  been posted at Tanglepatterns.com.

Frozen Woolly Mammoth

You've heard of Frozen Charlottes?  How about Frozen Woolly Mammoths?  I had this cool little box and hubby wanted me to put a mammoth inside it, lol.

A little Delight clay from Creative Paperclay® and I had my mammoth.  First I pasted a scene of snowy hills into the bottom of the box (doesn't show up in the scan, unfortunately). I colored my mammoth with some Marvy La Plume markers in Yellow Ochre and Coffee, then I popped him into the box and poured in some ICE Resin, encasing him in an icy plastic.

A few hours later it had set (though, instructions say it takes up to 3 days to fully cure). Fun!


Viva Las Vegastamps! Halloween Party Blog Hop - Day #4


Halloween Party Day #4-How can you win today?

Link to Day #4 of Carla Sonheim's Book Release Blog Celebration

Head over to Carla Sonheim's blog for the details on today's giveaway!

Link to tangle pattern Kledge

Linda Rea has posted steps to her tangle pattern Kledge.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

TanglePatterns String 019


TanglePatterns String 019

Link to petal ribbon step-out


the bubble-ator & petal ribbon step-out

Link to Brayer Technique


Brayer Technique

Round 08, Page 3-Rhodia Journal Swap

Close up of Jewelz.  I got her eyes too close together, dang it!


Zendala Dare #24

Zendala Dare #24

VLVS! Halloween Blog Hop!

“Halloween Party! The Viva Las Vegastamps blog hop starts tomorrow. Share the word and be entered for a giveway!”

Round 08 Rhodia Journal Swap-Page 2

Julie's Akita, Kota, has the sweetest face.  I'm thoroughly enjoying the chance to draw her dogs.


Friday, September 21, 2012

Link to tangle pattern Stained Glass

Suzanne McNeil has posted the steps to her tangle pattern Stained Glass.

Weekly Zentangle Roundup

Weekly Zentangle Roundup

Tangle Refresher 34 via TanglePatterns.com

Tangle Refresher 34 via TanglePatterns.com

Round 08-Rhodia Journal Swap-Page 1

The theme for the Rhodia Journal Swap is 'Favorite Things'.  I'm stretching this, because this round I'm drawing in Julie Bynum's journal and I know that two of her favorite things are her Akitas Jewelz and Kota.  Since dogs, in general, are a favorite thing of mine, I'm drawing her akitas. Since I don't know the dogs, and their colors are in the black, gray and brown range, I decided to stay with just black & white pen drawings.

I'm a bit worried though.  Somehow, a setting was changed on my PC so that I have square view on a widescreen monitor.  Usually, I scan my work in and it gives me something I can use to check my values and perspective.  But the view is so wacked now, that I can't trust what I'm seeing.  I hope there aren't any obvious errors.  Wish I could figure out how to get the proper view back!




Monday, September 17, 2012

Link to tangle pattern Aura Leah

The steps to Carla du Preez's new tangle pattern Aura-Leah are now up at Tanglepatterns.com.

Part III of the Pilot FriXion Erasable Color Pencil Like Gel Pen


Review of the Pilot FriXion Erasable Color Pencil Like Gel Pen



For introduction, specs and description of the Pilot FriXion Erasable Color-Pencil-Like Gel Pen please see my earlier reviews, Part 1 & Part II.

I actually hadn't planned to do a Part III.  But I kept wondering how these pens would do for coloring rubber stamp images.  I had decided I preferred using the pens on rough surfaced paper, but a rough surface isn't good for stamping.

So I knew at the outset that I'd need to choose the right paper.  I decided to go with the Stillman & Birn Epsilon Series for my test.

The Epsilon has a very smooth surface, boarding on slick, but it's a harder paper than the dotWebbie Clairefontaine paper.

A good portion of this drawing is stamped images from the wonderful Architecture collection stamp set from Blockheads Paper Arts

Ones of the cautions on the detail page for these pens is that it has a shorter lifespan than the regular FriXion line of gel pens. I thought this might lead people to conserve a little, and use other pens with it, so I decided to draw my lines with another pen, and use the FriXions purely for coloring.

An American Craft Precision pen was used for the patterns and a Ranger Archival black ink pad for the stamped images. The two inks are a close match and I didn't have to redraw lines on the stamped portion to tie them together.

They didn't both work so well with the FriXions, though.  The American Craft ink is acid free, permanent, waterproof and not supposed to bleed, but it did when I got the gel ink on it.  These seemed to improve as I went on.  I'm thinking that the American Craft takes quite a while to cure completely on the Epsilon Paper.  It didn't smudge, but surface dry isn't the same as cured.

Paper is going to make a big difference with the performance of these pens.  The colors were brighter, and less chalky in the Epsilon.  I didn't get the resistance as I wrote, but it wasn't as easy to get the lines to vary for lighter coloring and texture.  

I had the same problems with layering.  The gel ink doesn't like to go wet on wet, and if you layer too darkly the colors can get muddy.  But you can blend by smearing one color into the other.

Oh, and erasing?  Lol! I almost forgot to check it.  The color erased cleanly..  Slow and easy works best, and it can take a little pressure.  That's good in my book.  With light pressure, you can take off layers of color and use a reduction method to add highlights rather than shadowing.



Conclusion:  The Pilot FriXion Erasable Color Pencil Like Gel Pen is a great media for coloring stamped images, giving them a chalk-like texture, and bright colors you don't see too often.  The pens may cause feathering when combined with other types of pen.  

I still recommend a rougher surface for the greatest flexibility, but I wouldn't hesitate to use them on smoother paper.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Link to a simple stamped jewelry set-Blockheads Paper Arts

A very simple brooch and earring set, stamped with images from the Grunge Collages set, and some micro beads in medium pink, also from Blockheads, around the edges.

Part II of the Pilot Frixion Erasable Color-Pencil-Like Gel Pen

Last week, I wrote a review about the Pilot FriXion Erasable Color-Pencil-Like Gel Pen. Please check it out for specs and to learn more about these pens. You also read further with Part III.

Friday, I ended up spending 3 1/2 hours at a laundromat (my dryer is dead), fighting washers and dryers that wouldn't work.  Did you know you get very wet transferring loads of sopping wet clothes from one washer to another?  Thank heavens I had many quarters.

Not that my laundromat nightmare is relevant, except that in between laundry moves I had time to draw.  This time around I used the FriXions in my Stilman & Birn Delta Series notepad, and there were quite a few differences in performance from my experience on the smooth Clairefontaine paper.

The Delta has a rough surface, which has enough tooth for light watercolor washes and is great for color pencil.

The resistence I mentioned in my previous review was gone. The colors still turned a little muddy if layered too heavily, but not as quickly.  

The ink doesn't erase as well, but neither does it smear as easily. In my previous review I spoke about gel inks and how layering wet ink over ink that is still wet on the page, causes the ink to streak and actually lift away in some cases.  That still happens on this paper but not to the same extent.

All of this makes sense.  The Stillman & Birn Delta paperhas a moderate tooth, so some fibers are deeper than others.  Some ink settles allowing some to dry faster--less smearing, harder to erase the settled ink.

Conclusion
The Pilot Frixion Erasable Color-Pencil-Like Gel Pen colors have a chalky texture that is perfect if you want a chalkboard effect, carnival colors or a graffiti look.

For writing, I think a smoother paper such as found in the Rhodia dotWebbie is the choice for this pen.  For drawing, I recommend a toothier paper, though I wouldn't go with watercolor paper.  Paper designed for...wait for it... colored pencils...would be perfect!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Link to tangle pattern Bamdoozle

Penny Brouckaert's Daughter, 13 year old Caitlin has created a new tangle pattern, Bamdoozle.

Written an article about pens, pencils or paper?


I'm hosting the October Carnival of Pens, Pencils and Paper!

For those of you unfamiliar with the Carnival, it's a once-a-month roundup of articles relating in some way to the topic of Pens, Pencils and Paper.  It's a way for like-minded people to find each other's blogs--you'll find new people to follow and new people will find your blog, if you submit an article or two.

The categories are: Art supplies, miscellaneous, new product news, notebooks, office supplies, pencils, pens.

There is a formal submission form.  If you 've posted anything lately that seems to fit into any of the above categories, please submit them!  I'm looking forward to sending some readers your way!

TanglePatterns String 018


TanglePatterns String 018

New tangle IX-latest Zentangle newsletter

New tangle IX-latest Zentangle newsletter

Link to Zendala Dare #23

Link to Zendala Dare #23.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Geneviève Crabe's Weekly Roundup

Geneviève Crabe's Weekly Roundup of zentangle patterns and articles of interest.

Link to tangle pattern Escalator

A link to Suzanne McNeil's tangle pattern Escalator has been posted at Tanglepatterns.com.

Bananas & Rattan- Review of the Pilot FriXion Erasable Color Pencil Like Gel Pen


Pilot Frixion Erasable Color-Pencil-Like Gel Pen

Specs
Erasable Gel Ink
Point size-0.7 mm
Stick body (reminiscent of wooden pencil) with cap
Eraser on cap
Available in 24 colors
Sensitive to heat-not suitable for sitting in cars or mailing during hot weather
Erased areas will reappear in temperatures below -10C/14 Fahrenheit
Shorter lifespan than regular FriXion


When I saw these pens on the Jetpens blog, I was intrigued by the comparison to color pencils.  I had to try them out.  I was tempted to buy the set of 24, but decided I wanted to try a few of them first, so I bought what I felt were the basic colors.  I wish I'd gone ahead and bought the set of 24, lol.

I recently did a review that included a Pilot FriXion Gel Ink Pen, but these differ in body and pen tip.  It could be my imagination but the ink itself seemed different as well, more chalk-like in appearance.

The name of this pen compares it to color pencil, but it didn't take me long to realize I would have to accept these pens for what they are, and not try to use them like other pens or color pencils.  Not that they are difficult, just that they have their own features.

The distinction isn't as important if you use the pens for writing.  The ink isn't very dark, having a chalky texture.  That's kind of cool--you can get a chalkboard effect.

The pens write smoothly, but like other gel ink pens I've used lately there is a 'feel' to them that is hard to explain.  There isn't any dragging, but it feels like a resistance to me, as though the pen is trying to stick to paper.  I notice it at first, but tend to forget it about it as I write on.

Also, like other gel pens, if you try to layer over the ink before it dries, you actually remove some of the ink already laid down.  This isn't a problem if you layer over ink that has dried.  I believe this is a feature of gel ink pens in general, and this is more of a problem if you are drawing than if you are writing.

The ink will smear in the first few seconds, so a little care is needed.

The ink erases very well, some colors more so than others.

So far, I've only used the pens on Clairefontaine paper (Rhodia dotWebbie and the Clairefontaine Vintage 1950 Pocket Size Notebook), but I'll be posting more drawings as time goes on.

I took advantage of the smearing for shading purposes (I prefer a pen that smears a little as long as it dries within a few seconds).  

The colors can be blended two ways.  You can simply layer one color over another or after layering you can erase lightly to show colors underneath. 

I like the chalk-like appearance of the color, but found if you layer colors too darkly they turn muddy. I had more success in dotting on a dark color over lighter and smearing, or using the erasing method if I wanted a streaky rather than a smooth appearance.


Conclusion
If you want to write something that looks a little different, this is your pen.  I think it would be better used for writing quotes or highlighting areas of text, than for long letters or journal entries.

For drawing, they're excellent--IF--you accept them for what they are.  If you try to use them like ballpoints or colored pencils, you'll be fighting them.  If you are willing to use them as gel pens that give you a chalkboard appearance, you'll produce some fantastic work.

For further review detailing how these FriXion pens do on a rough surface paper please see this post and this post.

You can buy the Pilot Frixion Erasable Color-Pencil-Like Gel Pen at Jetpens, along with many other fantastic items!

I bought these pens myself, so this review is just because I wanted to share information about a cool product.









Link to tangle pattern Wildwood

Margaret Bremner has posted steps to her new tangle pattern Wildwood!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Viva Las VegaStamps! DT Tryout

Okay.  I'm using my woman's prerogative and changing my mind.  I had decided against re-applying for the Viva Las Vegastamps! design team because life is a bit crazy, and I worried I might be able to make all my deadlines.

But the team is so fantastic, and I dearly love me all those wonderful stamps and crafting products...so, here are three projects that I consider ...maybe not my best...but the best representatives of my style.  Styles? Style. :)





If you have any interest, please consider applying.  Viva Las Vegastamps! has a tremendous number of stamps of all genres.  They look for all different styles of work.  You might be just what they are looking for.  

Sept. 15th is the DEADLINE to apply to the Viva Las VegaStamps! Design Team Call.  You don't have to create something new--just show your best.  CLICK HERE for DETAILS. 

Blockheads Make N Take - Sept 1st 2012

Using Tim Holtz Distress Markers to stamp with.

I missed this make'n'take but caught the next one on embossing using a couple of different techniques.



I felt really stupid using the rainbow technique for the top one.  When you emboss you stamp, pour on the powder, and then tap the excess powder back into the jar.  I was using three colors and I got so caught up in deciding my colors that I poured on all three.  Which means it was impossible to tap the excess back--a waste of powder.  I should have known better!

I only bring this up because everyone was so gracious about my mistake.  I'm clearly experienced enough to know better, but I was made to feel completely at ease.  If you hesitate to go for a make'n'take because you don't have experience, or worry that you'll make mistakes then you have no excuse, lol!

The classes are short, easy and you'll be made to feel completely at home.  The name 'Blockheads' was chosen because the company understands how it feels to begin learning something new.

I'm enjoying the make-n-takes because I get the chance to try out new things and expand on what I know without buying products only to find they aren't quite what I wanted or needed.

Live in the Portland, Oregon area?  The Blockheads Brick & Mortar store is located at:

7201 NE Glisan Street Suite C

Portland OR 97213-6369


You can find a schedule of upcoming Make'n'Takes at: http://www.blockheadstamps.com/Portland_store.php  

And if you don't live in the area, the link takes you to the Blockheads online store where you can tutorials, design team project, galleries and tons and tons of cool rubber stamps!

Oh, and I have this thing--I never feel a project is 'mine' until I draw on it, lol!  I didn't add much, but a doodle or two with a white Pentel gel pen and I felt my tags were complete.






Art done to Joe Rotella Chipboard albums

Whew!  What a summer!  Waaay back at the beginning of August I won a package of Joe Rotella's Want2Scrap chipboard line from the fantastic Shirley Wheeler.  I received:

Three chipboard albums
Leaf Album 

What's Cooking?
Ocean Album

Three Chipboard Embellishment packs

Card Size Retro Christmas Ornaments
Pulley and Hardware
Retro Birds



My prize has been sitting in a bag next to my chair, while I cast longing eyes upon it, but I had to wait until while I kept up with other commitments.

Finally, my friend Robin and I had a crafting day.  I gave her one of the albums to do and I did another.

I did the Leaf Album.  I apologize for the poor photography.  These pieces were too large for the scanner, and the shiny paint I used made it difficult to get a good photo.


I had this nice cobwebby stuff from the Dollar Store that made me think of moss hanging from trees.  I thought it went well with the album.  For the first leaf, front and back, I decoupaged pieces from old magazine pages onto the chipboard, and then glazed it with acrylic paint.  I went to town with some Zentangle®-Inspired Artwork and finished up by gluing on chipboard bird and egg embellishments onto the front side.


For these next two leaves and acorn I used a Gelli Plates, a square that looks and feels like a slab of over-hardened jello.  You smear it with paint, lay down a stencil or stamp images, then press your paper, or in this case, chipboard into the paint.  Then you repeat with other colors and stencils/stamps until you have the textured look you want.

I used stickers and stencils and stamped images both before and after the Gelli Plates and finished up with Zentangle-Inspired art.




I departed from the Gelli Plates for the back, using a brush to apply acrylic paint, and then using a piece of corrugated card as a stamp.  For the front, I glued bits of punchella to simulate a nest, then painted up and added chipboard bird & egg embellishments.  On the back I glued on some text sentiments.
    

What fun!

Robin allowed me to photograh her album as well and gave me a quick rundown of her processes.  She did a fabulous job!  I was able to get better photos too (though for some reason I can't post them larger).  She did the What's Cooking? mixed media album.

I'm not positive which process goes with which page (she got much more creative than I did!) so I'll just list them: Stamping,  Markers/Pen, Ink,Collage, Sewing, Walnut Ink Spatter, Found objects, ATC sketches, Used Plastic Pieces as Templates, Gelli Plate Prints, Wallpaper, Beads, Decoupage with PVA=Glue .









I still have the Ocean Album to do, but that will be another post!




Thank you Card that I received


I wanted to share this beautiful handmade card I received from Cheetarah Cheda, one of the winners of the stamps based off my artwork.  

Thank you, Tarah!  Receiving your card was a pleasant surprise and made my day!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Review of Pilot Dry Erase Markers, FriXion Highlighter & Pen, G2, and B2P


I received a cool package from Shoplet this week-a set of Pilot Be Green Dry Erase Markers w/refill, a Pilot FriXion Lite Erasable Highlighter, a Pilot FriXion Erasable Gel Pen, a Pilot B2P Recycled Ballpoint Pen, and a Pilot G2 Gel Roller Ball Pen.  (For some reason, I didn't include the highlighter in this photo.  I think it was hiding from me).

Pilot Be Green Dry-Erase Marker

The BeGreen Dry Erase Marker is made with 91% recycled content and has a refillable ink supply and chisel tip.  It's a fat little thing, lol, but even though I have small hands, it was comfortable to use.  The 5 pack I received has orange, red, blue, green and black markers, plus I received a red ink refill.


I was a bit concerned at first.  I don't use a dry erase board, and I can't think of why I might need one.  But that's what the internet is for, isn't it?  I looked up uses for dry erase markers, and it turns out that they'll write on mirrors, metal cabinets, plastic freezer containers (mark what's in the container and just wipe it clean after you've used it-cool!).  


But I don't have any of those items that I want to write on.  However....




I was working on landscape drawing and needed to make a rectangular drawing from a square reference photo.  This is normally a pain in the patoot, because you have to draw and if you don't like it, you erase it, and ... well, long to short, I have this nice piece of acrylic that I use as both base and palette when painting.  It struck me that I could use my dry erase markers on this acrylic to simplify the trial and error.  Really cool!  


I put my reference photo under the acrylic and drew each element wherever I wanted.  It was super easy to wipe off what I didn't like.  Then I moved the photo again to try something different.  One of the reasons I don't like doing realism is this step.  But the dry erase markers make it so easy!  


After I had all the elements, I used this sketch as a reference to draw something more permanent, and then wiped the acrylic clean.  This is exciting!  What a wonderful way to work out the rough layout and values quickly without using up sheets of paper that would just get tossed.


I can't really compare these dry erase markers to others because I've never used them.  I don't believe they have much of an odor, but right now I don't have much sense of smell (allergies).   The ink flowed easily, and didn't skip or smear. It wiped off easily with a cloth, but didn't come off accidently when I was drawing.


And the 'more permanent' layout sketch I did?  I used the Pilot G2, Pilot B2P, and Pilot FriXion Erasable to draw it.  This sketch was done to establish lights and darks and basic areas of color. (Sorry--the finished piece is for a magazine advertisement, so I won't be showing it here).


The FriXion gave me the areas I wanted to be dominated by blue, the G2 gave me my darkest areas, and the B2P gave me the lighter strokes to establish where I wanted a broken foliage look or tumbling water.




G2 Retractable Gel Ink Roller Ball Pen


The Pilot G2 Retractable Gel Ink Roller Balls are refillable click pens with a fine 0.7 mm tip. They have a clear body that lets you see how much ink is left, and a contoured rubber grip for comfort.  That's still a thicker point then I like for my smaller drawings, but it's fantastic for something like the layout sketch I did above.


This is a pen I'll prefer for writing over drawing, though.  The ink is dark and gives a nice bold line.  Like most gel inks, it gives a consistent width and solid stroke. But I like to vary my line widths most of the time and the darkness of the stroke.  The G2 will be great when I want a stark contrast of black and white.


In the writing comparison I did here you can see that the G2 has the darkest ink of the three pens.





Pilot B2P Recycled Ballpoint Pen

The B2P's are refillable click pens with a medium 1 mm tip.  I've bought these pens in the past because I like the fact that they are recycled from plastic bottles, and I like the look and the feel of them in my hand.

While the pens don't skip, I do find the ink coverage isn't always even, and I have had these pens come apart in my purse (not the only pens to do so though-my purse is a wild and woolly place!).

I like these for drawing more than I like them for writing.  You can get dark values but it requires layers to get complete coverage.  On the other hand, you can easily get very light values and I find that more important with my style (mileage will definitely vary).

For drawing purposes, the G2 and the B2P work well together.




Pilot FriXion Point Erasable Gel Pen



The FriXion Erasable Gel pen is non-refillable with a needle point 0.5 mm tip and cap.  It's a stick pen with a cap (non-clickable) and a hard rubber tip eraser on the other end.  

I'm pretty excited about these pens (and had already bought some of them in different colors).  I like the feel of them.  I like the point size and the needle tip.  It would be nice if they were made of recycled materials though.

What really separates this pen from the herd is that it is erasable.  If you look at the doodle below, you'll see white spots at the shoulder and lower down the back where I've erased both pen and highlighter (more about the highlighter below).  I've used the pen on several types of paper, and it erases cleanly on all of them.  

It takes a little pressure because you are erasing by friction.  I was curious so I took a cheap white rubber eraser and tried it and it erased the ink.  Then I just rubbed briskly with my fingertip.  I wasn't able to erase, but I did reduce the color a bit.  

Accidental erasure shouldn't be a problem unless you write on a desk pad or a surface that has a lot of movement of heavy objects over your writing.  I had to rub pretty hard to make any difference (but no ink came off on my fingers).

The spirit of curiosity was still strong within me, lol, so I did some scribbling with a pencil, and tried erasing it with the FriXion eraser.  It worked.  Kinda.  Sorta.  About as well as most pencil erasers, which means it smeared and left streaks.  Better stick to using it on the FriXion ink!

This is my favorite out of all the pens I received, giving me a nice balance between values, but also a good, crisp line for writing.  I wish I'd received black ink instead of blue, just so it would be easier for you to see how it compares to the other two.

I like the fact that it's erasable.  I do have some concerns about fading, but only time will tell me how that goes.




Pilot FriXion Lite Erasable Highlighter 



If you saw a book highlighted with The FriXion Lite Erasable Highlighter you wouldn't think much about it.  The ink is the usual neon yellow color.  The highlighter is shaped like a pen with a bright yellow body, and while the black blaze is pretty snazzy, there isn't anything exceptional to separate it from all the other highlighters out there.

But like the FriXion gel pen, this highlighter is erasable.  As you saw in the doodle above, the highlighter erases completely on good quality paper, but I wondered how it would work with printed ink on cheaper paper, so I grabbed a great big book with thin newsprint type paper and gave it the erase test.




As you can see, there is the potential for some ink smearing and paper destruction.  The yellow didn't smear--it's the cheap ink in the book.  There was some pilling and I had to hold the page tight to keep it from crumpling.

I like the erasable option, but I'd test it out in a book before trying to erase very much.

Thank you Shoplet, and Pilot for these cool pens!

And Remember Shoplet can fill all your Office Supplies needs!